Fiberglass vs Metal

Comparisons of Fiberglass Pipe versus Stainless Steel, Metal, and PVC Pipe.

An explanation for each attribute/ranking follows.

Corrosion Resistance Encrustation Resistance No Residue Inert
High Pressure Resistance Non-Conductive Light Weight
Fiberglass X X X X X X X X
Stainless X X
Metal X X

Superior Flow Characteristics High Torque Resistance Ease of
Low Installation Costs Low Maintenance Low Cost
Fiberglass X X X X X X
Stainless X
Metal X X

Corrosion Resistance – Fiberglass Pipe  is corrosion resistant both inside and out. This includes resistance to rust,  pitting, and dezincification which weakens and destroys metal pipe.

Low Encrustation/Scale Build-up  -Fiberglass is extremely resistant to  encrustation and scale.  Buildup of these  materials decreases the internal diameter of the Column Pipe, making pumps work  harder. Clear, open Fiberglass Pipes deliver energy savings and prolong the life  of the pump. No de-scaling procedures are required.

No Residue – Fiberglass does not  release the residues produced by metal. Residue damages filters, making  Fiberglass Pipe the choice for membrane filtration and RO water treatment  plants.

Inert Properties – Fiberglass pipe is  chemically non-reactive and does not corrode from contact with brackish water.

 Heat Resistant – Fiberglass Casing is  extremely resistant to the heat-of-hydration during installation/grouting.  Unlike PVC pipe, Fiberglass Casing will not crumple from exposure to heat.

Additionally, the heat resistant properties of Fiberglass  Column (Drop) Pipe prevents hourglassing – – in the event of valve/system  failure heating the water.  PVC drop  pipe can collapse in these situations, allowing pumps to fall into the well.

High Pressure Resistance – The  strength-to-weight ratio of Fiberglass surpasses that of iron, carbon and  stainless steel.  The great  compressive strength of Fiberglass Casing enables its installation to well  depths that crumple PVC pipe.  The  strength of Fiberglass withstands the weight of cement poured at installation.

The superior strength of Fiberglass Column (Drop) Pipe  withstands the start-up torque created by high horsepower pumps and has been  used as a solution to “water hammer.”

Non-Conductive – Burgess Fiberglass  Pipe has a very high dielectric constant and will not carry an electrical  current; important for mitigating the effects of lightening strikes and  electrolytic corrosion.

Light Weight – Fiberglass Pipe is  lighter than carbon or stainless steel. Its light weight makes it easier to  handle and install.

Superior Flow Characteristics  – Fiberglass has a Low Friction  Coefficient which equates to ease of lift, delivering lower pumping costs than  stainless or metal. Users save on energy costs and smaller pump systems.

High Torque Resistance – As stated  above, the superior strength of Fiberglass Column Pipe withstands the start-up  torque created by high horsepower pumps. PVC can crumple in high-torque  situations.

Ease of Installation – As stated  above, the strength of Fiberglass provides the ability to more quickly grout  Fiberglass Casing.

Another issue is the smooth nature of metal which requires  welding “cat eyes” or lugs onto the pipe, in order for it to be lifted by  elevators.  Each metal joint must be  welded together by skilled welders – and the metal is extremely heavy to handle.  These are expensive, time consuming obstacles.

Conversely, elevators attach easily under the female bell end  of Burgess Fiberglass Casing. Joints are aligned, threaded and bonded together  quickly – without special skills.  Fiberglass is lighter and easier to handle than metal.  Prep time and installation time are significantly reduced using Burgess  Fiberglass Casing.

 In contrast, when installing PVC Casing, additional process  may be required to circulate water in the PVC pipe to prevent crumpling from the  heat-of-hydration.

Low installation costs – As outlined  in the Installation section, above, installation of metal is time and labor  intensive. Welders and the extra cost of men and drilling rigs is prohibitive  when compared to installing lightweight, threaded Fiberglass Casing.

PVC installation costs are significant when Casing must be  cooled with water to withstand the heat of hydration.

Low Maintenance – Fiberglass remains  virtually free from buildup of scale or encrustation. No de-scaling procedures  are required.

Low Cost – Fiberglass Pipe is  considerably less expensive than stainless steel. When other benefits are  factored in, Fiberglass is much more cost effective when compared to other types  of pipe.